Discussion Question

Discussion Question

Scholars assert that psychology was instituted as a formal discipline within the latter half of the nineteenth century. Philosophy and physiology serve as the two main foundational bases for the discipline of psychology. Nairne (2008) holds the view that, “philosophers helped frame many of the questions that occupy the attention of psychologists today: Where does knowledge come from? What are the laws, if any, that govern sensation? What are the necessary conditions of learning and remembering?” (p.9). However, physiology was rather objective than abstract in its studies as it attended to the nature and structure of the human body, how the various components work and how this affects other physiological components. Philosophy therefore studied the human brain and when both scholarly ideas were combined, there emerged the issue of the body and mind problem that forms one of the most studied elements in psychology. In our discussion however, we will focus on the physiological input into the discipline of psychology.

Physiology as a discipline has performed many investigative researches that regard the human brain and how its various working mechanisms lead to a proportionate behavior change. This ultimately led to the rise of physiological psychology, a sub-discipline that attributes bodily functions to modification in psychological and behavioral patterns. This modification is attributed to functions of the brain and is believed to monitor both voluntary and reflex actions. Physiologists hold the view that behavior modification begins with somatic interventions that are governed by hormonal discharges and the stimulation of various brain sections (Nairne, 2008). For instance, when a person encounters danger, release of the adrenaline hormone in the body aids the individual paranormal strength to face the danger and resort to fighting for their own life or the option of flight. This behavior modification is governed by the level of the hormone in the blood system in a way that, once the danger is avoided, the hormonal discharge is stopped and the individual returns to a state of normalcy.

Behavioral psychology that is hinged on the concept of classical conditioning therefore emanated from these physiological classes of thought. The ability of hormones to bring consequent changes within the human body is attributed to a bodily condition that when engaged require the given anticipated change. This is because the body has been preconditioned in a manner that is able to translate the intended message once a given secretion is afforded. This concept was discovered by Ivan Pavlov, a physiologist that experimented with dogs in proving that behavior modification can be realized through set preconditions (Nairne, 2008). In the given experiment, the physiologist always rang a bell before feeding the dogs and after a given period, the dogs’ brains started associating bell rings with feed time. Mental experts have used the same concept in the dealing with psychological ailments by offering different conditions to a brain required to aid an individual to overcome cases of fear and inferiority in life.

The stimulation of various parts of the body results into different actions. This results into the release of electrical impulses into the body through motor neurons. The art of physiotherapy is centered on brain stimulation achieved through applying stress on pressure points found within the body. These actions tend to send various messages to the brain and in turn, the required action is achieved. For instance, the spirit gate is a pressure point located near the hand pulse region that when stimulated aids the individual in emotional relief, reduced scatterbrain actions, worry, apprehension and panic. The acupuncture practice that offers pressure release from the body is based on the same precepts (Nairne, 2008). This concept has been used in the learning of the ego and consciousness within the human body and this has consequently led to the technique of the reverse psychology. This involves the use of reactance to bring about the desired change. When an individual is in pain, the brain perceives this yet in some cases, it requires some stimulation for it to counter the pain. This also applies to the concept of reverse psychology and it is referred to as reactance.












Nairne, J. S. (2008). Psychology. Clifton Park, NY: Cengage Learning.




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